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    The world of social media marketing moves lightning fast, with trends vanishing into the ether just as quickly as they appeared. Trying to keep track of what’s in and what’s so 2020 can be dizzying, but an adaptive social media strategy is well worth the effort. After all, there were 3.78 billion people active on social media in 2020, with each person spending, on average, 2.5 hours scrolling through social media. That represents a huge opportunity for businesses in virtually every industry to tap into their target demographic.

    Whether you are paying for advertising space on social media or relying on organic marketing to boost your business, here are the top social media trends in 2021 to incorporate into your marketing strategy.

    Video is King

    In 2020, 54% of social media users said they wanted to see more video content, and the desire for video has not waned since then. Short form videos blew up in 2020 thanks to TikTok’s rise. The effect was compounded by the shift in users being online more since stay at home orders were put in place.

    Using TikTok, Instagram Reels, or Snapchat story format style videos is never a wasted effort. This is a highly effective way to create engaging, bite-sized content to remind users about your brand. Plus, regular video content can help to establish a more intimate connection between you and your audience. Videos that are funny, relatable, or otherwise clearly communicate your brand voice will help users feel a stronger connection to your business. This is great for both attracting new customers and nurturing customer loyalty with current users.

    Live video is gaining popularity at a rapid rate as well. In fact, the live-streaming industry increased an impressive 99% between April 2019 and April 2020. As such, it is safe to say that we will continue to see live video dominate across social media. With everything from work meetings to happy hour taking place in a digital realm, live video is the new boomerang.

    High-Value Content

    Posting for the sake of posting is great and all, but if what you are sharing isn’t valuable to your community, then why share it at all? Over the course of 2020, we have seen a shift across social media. People are no longer looking for pretty content that just looks nice. They are looking for content with a bit of meat to it. Content with value (especially free value).

    So, think along the lines of:

    • Guides
    • Recommendation lists
    • Free resources
    • Masterclasses
    • Workshops

    Let’s consider an example. How does this relate to a travel company, an architecture firm or a dental office? Dig deep and find something that your customers would find useful or something that your peers would find helpful. Lists, guides and insightful blog content will continue to serve your audience, plus they are really easy to repurpose year over year by just updating relevant information.

    Same sample titles for great blog content are:

    • 5 Ways To Level Up Your Oral Health Game
    • 10 Trends in Residential Home Design We Will See in 2021
    • 10 Reasons To Travel During a Pandemic (And Feel No Shame About It.)

    Keep quality content in mind during every stage of crafting content, from keyword research to writing to graphics. Blog content should represent thought leadership best practices, providing real value to readers. It is worth taking the time to create quality content rather than putting out a large quantity of sub-par content. The digital realm is jam-packed with content; how can you make yours stand out?

    Give a Shit

    With social justice movements, climate change conversations, and calls for accountability across the board becoming more and more mainstream… It is no surprise that customers are doing a double take when it comes to who they are supporting and where they are spending their hard earned money. It is a good idea to take a stand for your company values and convey your position across social media. Seeing a brand that is unafraid to take a stand for what they believe in can inspire long-lasting brand loyalty and earn you a reputation as one of the good guys.

    Social Media Marketing Trends: 2021

    Because social media is such a dynamic field, it deserves the focused attention of a specialist, whether that specialist is an in-house member of your team or part of a social media marketing agency you partner with. Be bold and rise those trends until they fade away to be replaced by a newer one.

    Social media is an ever-changing medium. What works well in January, may not be what works in December. The key is to pay attention to social media marketing trends for 2021 and beyond and quickly adapt.